Tuesday, 14 December 2010
Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs
National Drugs Strategy
Question 38: To ask the Minister for Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs his views on the roll out of the new Dial to Stop Drugs campaign; if there have been any reports on its success to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46046/10]
Based on the positive evaluation of the original Dial to Stop Drug Dealing campaign, the ongoing support of the Gardaí and positive community feedback, I decided to relaunch the campaign with a more national focus. In this regard, on 6 October last I announced a two week national promotional campaign, to be followed by local campaigns at Drugs Task Force level. All the local campaigns have run, with the final one just having started on 13th December.
My belief in the campaign has been justified with a new record being set in October last for the number of calls received since the phone line opened in September 2008 - over 800 calls and 285 reports to the Gardaí. Calls in November totalled 553 with 179 reports, also a very high level. From September 2008 to date, a total of 8,684 calls have been made to the phone line with 2,485 reports generated. Calls received have been spread right across the country, including areas that that have not run a campaign.
I believe very strongly in the notion that communities should be empowered and should feel enabled to make a stand in a way that they need never fear will impact negatively on them. The Dial to Stop Drug Dealing Campaign is one measure to support local communities in this regard.
A full evaluation of the current phase of the Dial to Stop Drug Dealing campaign will be carried out on its completion at the end of the year.